by Jacob Russell Dring
Genre: Science Fiction
Print Length: 363 pages
Reviewed by Akram Herrak
A story of survival and camaraderie in a future Earth on the brink of extinction
It is 2066. Earth is still ever-changing with new advanced technology that brings to life what the previous generation had seen only through the imagination and creativity of sci-fi movies. Mechs, or giant robots controlled by people, are now standard weapons of war and not the basis for some anime. They are in fact used in combat, but their next warfare will be unlike anything that has come before.
Our protagonist Farooq Meskin is presenting the next model in mechs in a conference that leaves everyone satisfied and confident in the young achieving man. But soon, these feelings of hope are crushed by reports of strange incidents that are revealed to be an invasion from a strange extraterrestrial species. It’s the mechs that will have to stand and fight for humanity.
I feel lucky to be living in an era where writers and creators have grown up getting influenced by 80s and 90s entertainment. Writers like Jacob Russell Dring have experienced the wonders of sci-fi storytelling in its golden age, and they are taking the tradition to new heights that manage to feel both familiar and refreshing. Of course there have been stories about alien invasions and mechs before, but none have stricken me with the same satisfying mix of nostalgia and uniqueness like Devour has.
While the premise is not necessarily brand new, that is not to say it is not enjoyable. On the contrary. The plot is always entertaining, filled with big exciting moments and beautiful themes that add a deeper layer to the story. The events unfold at a great pace—simultaneously fluid and quick-moving. This future Earth feels tangible with the care and investment given to its worldbuilding detail. Beneath a sci-fi story is another tale of camaraderie and friendship, as the Ember Wolves, the mech fighters of our novel, embrace heroism and the sense of duty that the situation calls upon them. We’re here to witness whether they can truly rise to rescue our planet.
If you’re a fan of classic sci-fi, Devour is going to give you something to get excited about and then some. It’s got all the elements of the genre you’re looking for, with a few surprises to keep you on your toes.
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